Talents add glitz to ucsi university prom night
Sat, 2009-11-21 13:59 — admin
Ahmad Nahri (on the left), winner of UCSI’s Got Talent 2009.JPG
The finals for UCSI's Got Talent 2009 came to a close during the University's Hollywood-themed Prom Night. Ahmad Nahri (Malaysia) emerged as the winner, taking home with him the prize money of RM1000 cash. Iliya Ibrahim (Nigeria, Foundation in Architectural Studies) came in second. Ahmad and Iliya were among five finalists who qualified after receiving the highest amount of votes online. The other finalists were Celine Tan (Malaysia, Mass Communications) Abigail (Nigeria, Business Adminstration) and Lydia Octavia Yusmanto (Indonesia, Mass Communications).
The finalists were judged by celebrity judges, Christien New, Lavin Seow and R&B singer and songwriter, Liang. All the judges were impressed with the level of talent and professionalism demonstrated by each of the contestants. Iliya performed a rap song he had written about UCSI University and its students, Lydia sang Whitney Houston's I Will Always Love You, which was dedicated to her father, while Celine sang a song she had written specially for the Prom Night. Abigail sang Kelly Clarkson's Because of you and Ahmad sang his trademark song, Jason Mraz's Butterfly. All of the finalists and semi-finalists jointly sang Micheal Bolton's Go the Distance at the end of the event, individually performing their special talents, to everyone's delight.
More than 35 students auditioned in the first round of the competition more than a month ago. They were judged by Mr. Juan Pablo De Zubiria Rueda, Acting Head for UCSI University's Contemporary Music Department, Kevin Chong, former television host and Stephanie Liew, formerly Student Council President. Fourteen students made it to the semi-finals, comprising students with a wide range of talents, from magicians and dancers to actors and singers. The top five were chosen based on online votes via the University's website.
"Not everyone could come to the semi-finals, so it was important to ensure every contestant received their fair share of the votes based on their performance," said Kendrick Ng, Publicity Director of the Student Council, who were organisers of the event. "This was how we came about to use UCSI University's Youtube channel, so that the public can view each of the performances, and judge for themselves who should be in the top five." Late last year, UCSI University started to actively participate in a social networking site, Facebook, and Youtube to be better connected to students, and to encourage interactivity.
According to Ahmad, the Youtube videos were the single most important factor that gave him a spot in the top five. "I am still so new at UCSI University, and didn't know that many people, so it would have been difficult to garner enough votes. I am really thankful for the chance to be in the top five, and I owe it all to UCSI University's Youtube". Ahmad, who is a first year English Language and Communications student, plans to continue doing music as a minor. "I wanted initially to pursue a degree in Music at UCSI University, but took up my father's advice to study English instead. But music will always feature prominently in my life, as it is my passion," said the 21 year-old.
The night of glitz and glamour also saw students dressed to the nines, Hollywood-style. Jackie Chiong Swee Hung and Cassey Soo Yiing Ying were declared Prom King and Prom Queen respectively. All five couples who were in the running for the Prom King and Queen had initially participated in a fashion show on campus prior to the event. The couples were also required to do a short performance during the Prom Night to garner votes from the audience. While some sang romantic duets, others spiced it up with Latin and Bollywood dancing.
Combining the two events, UCSI's Got Talent and Prom Night had proven to be a success, based on feedback received from students as well as staff. UCSI University Vice President of Corporate Affairs, Professor Dr. Norfadzillah bt. Hitam said that she was truly impressed with the amount of dedication the students had put in to execute an event of this magnitude. "The event really showcased our students' hidden talents, and I am really happy that we had the chance to see them perform," she said.
Videos from the semi-finals are still available for viewing on UCSI University Youtube at http://www.ucsi.edu.my/youtube